Comperative Commentary on Newspapers Essay

The articles from the Independent and the Sun are written on the 13th of September 2007 and describe the same event. Namely the new outbreak of foot- and- mouth disease. The articles are written by Andrew Grice (Text a) and George Pascoe-Watson (Text b) and both writers are political editors. Through different stylistic devices and aspects such as headings, photo’s and sources, the reader gets drawn to the article. Both newspapers appear to be giving the exact same information.

By using these aspects and the different styles of writing the perspective, reliability and information of these articles are influenced. The Sun (mostly right-winged) is a tabloid as to the Independent (mostly liberal) which is a broadsheet, because of this it can be known that the way they present information will be different. Both articles use aspects to influence the reader, but both emphasize differently which creates a difference in the emotion and view of the reader.

The heading of an article influences the reader the most, because this shows what the article is about and draws the attention of the readers. Both articles make use of a headline, which is not a full sentence. This is one of the typical stylistic devices that a headline has. Text a uses the headline to state the most important information of the article. Other than The independent, The Sun emphasizes more on the headline, by using capitalization to attract the readers. This could be an advantage because by the unclear information readers want to know what happened. It also shows a bit of informality compared to the text in the Independent. In the headline of the Sun there is also a use of a metaphor namely “all clear” , this also adds to the attraction of the reader .

The Sun also uses subheadings to make their article more clear, under the headline the subheading “Cam slams PM as new foot and mouth strikes” states the important information of the article. Text a already shows this in its heading. This subheading is fairly informal because “Cam and PM” are abbreviations for the prime minister and Mr. Cameron. In the subheading “Questions”, the paragraphs are the opinions of different sources in the article which criticize the situation. The subheading makes the structure clearer. As supposed to text a, where there are no subheadings needed because the information is shown clear in the heading.

As sources add reliability to an article, both articles use sources. Some differentiate and some are identical. Mr. Cameron is one of the known sources that both of the newspapers have. “I think there is a real question about government competence” was shown in both of the articles, to indicate that this was probably a public conference and that everyone has access to this information. Because it is a source that more than one newspaper uses it can be assumed that this is reliable.

Text a also has some other sources where it could be assumed that these are more reliable. Professor Brian Spatt, of imperial College ,London is one of them, because it can be read that he has experience with the situation. Both articles show some reliable sources, though it has to be taking in consideration that the Independent shows more balanced sources than the Sun. The Independent also added Professor Brian Spatt, who is in favor for the government. As to the Sun which only shows quotations of sources which are against the government. Both include indirect and direct quotes. These are the body of the articles and are of high importance to the view of the reader.

Like the sources the photographs also contribute to the factual content of the article and the perspective of the reader. Both articles have a few photo’s. In both of these newspapers some photo’s are identical. These are the maps. They are mostly there to show where exactly it has happened. The photo’s from the Independent are more related to the place where it happened than with the Sun. It for example shows a warning sign and the police. This is to emphasize on the seriousness of the article. Text b shows less pictures but shows a picture of Mr. Brown this is also used to show the reaction of Mr. Brown and helps the readers to understand that Mr. Brown is accused. This could possibly also relate to the fact that the Sun is a right- winged tabloid. Overall the photographs show in both of the newspapers the seriousness of the article and makes the reader understand faster and easier what is going on in the article.

Both articles decided to emphasize on different aspects to create a perspective for the reader. The Sun decided to do this more with the headline, as to The independent which focuses more on pictures. Because of these aspects the readers view will differentiate after reading one of the articles. It would seem that with the Sun the reader gets influenced more because this shows clearly a right wing perspective as to the Independent who tries to only give information. No matter which aspect is used for a newspaper, each newspaper emphasizes more on a certain aspect than another to give their opinion towards the world in a subtle way.

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